La Reine Margot

One of my favorite French films is La Reine Margot Released in 1994 and directed by Patrice Chéreau. It's based on the 1845 historical novel by Alexandre Dumas and stars Isabelle Adjani, Daniel Auteuil, Virna Lisi and Vincent Pérez. 

La Reine Margot is set in the late 16th century when Protestant Huguenots and Catholics were fighting over political control of France, which is ruled by the neurotic, hypochondriac King Charles IX and his mother, Catherine de' Medici, a scheming power player. Catherine decides to make an overture of goodwill by offering up her daughter Margot (Isabelle Adjani) in marriage to Henri de Bourbon (Daniel Auteuil), a prominent Huguenot and King of Navarre. She also schemes to bring about the notorious St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre of 1572, when thousands of Protestants are slaughtered. The marriage goes forward but Margot, who does not love Henri, begins a passionate affair with the soldier La Môle (Vincent Pérez), also a Protestant from a well-to-do family. 

Poisonings, murders, and intrigue ensue...


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